LTSP Live Howto

Introduction

LTSP is the Linux Terminal Server Project. It allows you to set up a diskless workstation environment with not much effort. The Edubuntu DVD ships with a feature called Live LTSP that allows you to try out or demonstrate LTSP without making any permanent changes to a system.

Note: LTSP Live is only available from the Edubuntu Live session, it's not available from an installed Edubuntu system. On an installed system, you will have to install LTSP in order to use it. LTSP starts a DHCP server on the network interface specified. Be careful when you're on a larger network, if you accidentally start a DHCP server on the rest of your company or school network, you will surely annoy your network administrator.

How it works

The Edubuntu Live DVD ships with a complete LTSP environment that has been pre-built. When selecting the LTSP Live option, it will install and configure some additional packages to your system. It's recommended that you have at least 1GB of RAM to use this feature. Since optical drives are quite slow, it's generally a good idea to use Live LTSP from an external USB flash disk or external hard drive. Our Instalation Guide contains more information on how to put an Edubuntu live environment on USB media.

How to use it

Start Edubuntu from a Live DVD or USB disk. You need to select the "Try Edubuntu without Installing" option from the boot menu to start up to a full desktop session.

Step 1: From the Applications menu on the top left corner, choose "Other" and then "LTSP Live".

Step 2: Select network card.

You should be presented with a window similar to the one above. Usually, the first network card in your system will be called "eth0" and the second card "eth1". By default it will use the second network card, but if your system only has a single network card installed, you will have to use "eth0". If you already have an Internet connection configured on that network card, and would like to use it during LTSP Live on the thin clients, then you could use an alias on that network card by entering "eth0:1".

If you already have an address configured on a card, the utility will warn you about it. This is useful if you have two network cards but aren't sure of which one is already configured. You will then be able to return to the previous form and change your option, or alternatively you could force it and lose the existing network connection. Since it's a live environment, it will only apply until you restart the system.

After about 2 minutes, depending on the speed of the computer, you will be informed that the Live LTSP environment is ready to use. That was easy, wasn't it?

Next, you simply have to set the connected workstations to boot from the network. You can usually do this by pressing F12 during the boot process or by pressing F2, F10 or delete (depending on computer manufacture) to enter its setup. Refer to your computer's manual for further details or feel free to ask us for further assistance.

Ending the LTSP Live session

To end the LTSP Live session, simply shut down or reboot the system.